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The most recent encyclical from Pope Francis, Fratelli Tutti, and the challenges he poses in it, deserves time and spiritual work for all of us. It also deserves more than “checking the box” for something we've read and filed away. That would be to avoid the very thing Francis warns of: a "desensitized human conscience."
As we emerge from the Lenten cycle, yes, make sure we've read the encyclical, and then make a covenant with ourselves to lean in into the challenges posed by Francis.  Reflect on the parts that can lead to personal growth or even transformation. Francis doesn't hold back and the challenges feel overwhelming, but as we know through our communities and charism, that joining others in the work, “acting together in the common good” raising our voices, ending our silence is after all, the solution to nearly all the wrongs that face us.  Maybe not in our lifetimes, but allowing us the wholeness of feeling that we have done enough.  We have done what we can.

See the article below from Pax Christi International about the Peace Dimensions of Fratelli Tutti.  What projects call you? What causes do you already support; how you are already in motion? How will you communicate with those who disagree?  How you will respond as a citizen, as a follower of Jesus and a compassionate human being?

In peace and solidarity, 

David Horvath
Passion of the Earth
Join us in an "Ecological Way of the Cross"

Good Friday, April 2
11am-noon Pacific/1-2pm Central/2-3pm Eastern

Using the powerful Way of the Cross ritual, this 1 hour experience will explore the Passion of the Earth as we journey together toward the Passion of our Lord.  Grounded in prayer and the Passionist charism we will connect to issues facing our planet and many of the communities in which Passionist entities are located (such as the drought and fires in CA, the Flint water crisis for Detroit, and others). A beautiful way to enter and live into the Easter Triduum.  

Register in advance for this event.   After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Image:  Melanie Weidner, Passion of the Earth Series 
Indigenous youth lead on climate action, Loyola Chicago

During the standoff at Standing Rock against the Dakota Access Pipeline, Chief Arvol Looking Horse, a spiritual leader of the Lakota Sioux, held a ceremony where he deputized the youth there as akicita, or "special protectors of the people."  These young Native people organized themselves as the International Indigenous Youth Council, and they took the lead in nonviolent actions opposing the pipeline. Members of the  Council were on center screen at the annual climate change conference at Loyola University Chicago. Young activists like them have shared their stories, artwork and resolve in addressing climate change and the dire environmental threats facing their communities and the planet.  Learn more about the conference and Native voices from NCR's Earth Beat.

Faith Climate Action Week, April 16-25th

The theme of this year’s Faith Climate Action Week (April 16 – 25) is “Sacred Ground: Cultivating Connections Between our Faith, our Food, and the Climate.”

Interfaith Power and Light is once again providing very useful Faith Climate Action Week organizing tools for faith communities The kit examines how our food systems contribute to injustice and to climate change, and how our faith traditions call us to respond with practical solutions.  It includes faith-based discussion materials; a Garden Blessing ceremony; and suggestions and resources for how to get engaged in supporting food justice and healthy soil.  Also included are advocacy postcards addressed to the Secretary of Agriculture and a handy wallet shopper’s guide, “Pesticides in Produce”. Faith Climate Action Week organizer’s kits available here.

Telling a powerful story about our "good dirt."

Use this recent film for discussion, narrated by Woody Harrelson

The film is about how regenerating the world’s soils has the potential to rapidly stabilize Earth’s climate, restore lost ecosystems, and create abundant food supplies.  It helps explain why transitioning to regenerative agriculture could be key in rehabilitating the planet, while simultaneously invigorating a new sense of hope and inspiration in viewers. Learn more about the film and the work around it.  

Celebrating the 10th Anniversary
Journey of the Universe

Saturday, April 10, 2021
4:00 – 5:30pm Eastern Time

This webinar will describe the 10-year odyssey of creating Journey of the Universe and the 10 years of bringing it out into ever widening circles.  To register and add this event to your calendar, click here.

The Journey of Journey: Making the Film
  •       Brian Thomas Swimme, co-author, Journey of the Universe
  •       Mary Evelyn Tucker, co-author, Journey of the Universe
  •       John Grim, co-producer, Journey of the Universe film
The Future of Journey: Engaging with the Film
  •       Jennifer Morgan, Deeptime Network
  •       Devin O’Dea, Journey of the Universe Project Director
  •       Sam King, Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology
For further exploration:  
      Journey of the Universe
      Yale/Coursera classes on Journey of the Universe
Passion for Justice
Being Black and Catholic:
A Reflection
From a PSN member: "I heard [Sr. Nicole] speak before but was reminded by her testimony of the naked truth of racism, the scars it leaves, how racism permeates our society, and the part I play in allowing it to exist in myself, in society and in the Catholic Church.   After listening to her presentation, I felt sad, guilty and angry. " Sr. Nicole Trahan FMI shares her reflections on the challenges of being a Black woman in the Catholic Church of the Midwest and the challenge facing the Church to become truly integrated and anti-racist.  Watch her story here.   
Can corporations and institutions become anti-racist?
The killing of George Floyd led once again to a much needed deep dive look at most fundamental beliefs and systems, including the corporate world.  As You Sow, a leading non-profit in shareholder advocacy, created the Racial Justice Initiative in order to hold corporations accountable on the racial justice statements and policies.  Learn about these efforts and the use of "racial justice scorecards" to achieve this accountability .  Read more here.  
NEW:  Cardinal Wilton Gregory homily "Confronting the sin of Racism."

Image: CNS/Cathcolic Standard/Andrew Biraj

On March 20, Washington Cardinal Wilton D. Gregory gave a major address at a  Mass for peace and justice at Nativity Church in Burke, Va.  His focus was on confronting the sin of racism and working for racial harmony and stressed that a "healing of America's soul" is needed. Read the story here.

Catholic Response to Racism

Image: St. Anthony Messenger
Everyone has a story.  They include pleasant experiences, tragedies and hard realities. For Chicago Deacon Art Miller, the latter have played a large part in shaping both his life and ministry. Deacon lived in the South Side of Chicago, where he lived with his parents and three of his four siblings. For the most part, it was a typical life for a young kid—school, playing outside with friends, and spending time with family.  Until the summer of 1955 when one of Miller’s neighborhood friends grabbed the attention of the nation in a horrible way. That friend was Emmett Till, the 14-year-old young man who was brutally murdered for allegedly whistling at a white woman during a trip to Mississippi to visit relatives. 
Read the Art's full story here.

White Supremacy in the Catholic Church
For Black History Month, the Franciscan Federation hosted a webinar on Feb. 22nd where they invited Franciscan Action Network's Jason Miller to give a talk entitled, Where Do We Go From Here? Confronting White Supremacy with a Franciscan Heart.

With St. Francis and Pope Francis as guides, Jason challenged participants offering historical and modern-day examples of white supremacy in the Catholic Church.

If you missed the webinar you can watch it here
Passion for Peacemaking
Webinar Recording: Peace Dimensions of Fratelli Tutti

Image: NCR Tim Mossholder

Pax Christi International hosted one-hour webinars for reflection and discussion on the meaning of Fratelli Tutti in local contexts. 

How can it be a resource for peacebuilding and impact the practice of peacebuilding? Does it change teaching on just war? How does it open dialogue on peace with Muslims? How does its Franciscan influence deepen the understanding of peacebuilding?

This webinar examined these questions and more to probe the peace dimensions of the encyclical. The recording of the event is found online by clicking here.
Laudato Si' Corner

“The universe unfolds in God, who fills it completely. Hence, there is a mystical meaning to be found in a leaf, in a mountain trail, in a dewdrop, in a poor person’s face. The ideal is not only to pass from the exterior to the interior to discover the action of God in the soul, but also to discover God in all things.” (Paragraph 233) Laudato Si',  Pope Francis, 2015, Chapter 4, #144.

Question: As you prayerfully move through the Lenten Season and approach the Triduum, have you even once centered the astounding gift of creation in that process?

Action: If you haven’t already, we invite you to pray the Novena of Creation--  Novena of Creation  March 11-19 but available all year.


Linking Justice and Peace in the Lectionary

The Passionist Solidarity Network collaborates with other community justice and peace offices and we would love to see homily resources coming from the Passionist charism. Contact the Passionist Solidarity Network office if you would like to contribute.

Scripture reflections by Maryknoll missioners starting in the new liturgical year, beginning Nov. 29. Click here to subscribe.

The Holy Cross Passionist website features wonderful daily scripture reflections from the Passionist Family.  Three regular contributors are members of the Passionist Solidarity Network Advisory Board. 

The Catholic Climate Covenant has homily helps incorporating Laudato Si’ as well as weekly tip bulletin inserts (including Spanish). 
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